Animal Welfare League (AWL) executive director and board member Linda Estrada told me (and also Channel 5 in the report below) that she wants to hear from the community. Now, she and other board members will have that chance. Tuesday, February 6, there will be a public forum held at The Village of Chicago Ridge, 10455 Ridgeland Ave. in Chicago Ridge, at 6:30 p.m. The meeting is open and all are welcome.
To be sure, AWL has a challenging task as one of few open-door facilities in the Chicago area. Much of the community they serve is impoverished.
I continue to hope and strongly encourage that the AWL board listens to their most important stakeholders, and understands that animal advocates only want what is best. If they don’t listen, a price will be paid.
Yes, there is a lot of noise and, at times, it’s challenging to discern from complaints that concern animal welfare and the way the facility is operated versus personal vendettas, which clearly some have, against members of the AWL management. Still, I have heard from legitimate and credible sources, which go beyond ex-employees and former volunteers, including local veterinarians and even directors from other nearby shelters. And, some of the accusations include documentation that verifies claims.
Ch. 5 (WMAQ-TV report) did this report:
The goal isn’t to close the shelter. The goal is to build a bridge to regain community trust, and most of all to treat the animals the best that they can possibly be cared for. If you have something to say, this meeting will be an opportunity.
(Note: I am in Florida at this time presenting at the VMX Veterinary Conference. I would otherwise be there for certain).